Finding offensive tackles in the 2018 recruiting class is a priority for the Indiana staff, and one prospect at that position that has emerged as a target is Noah Gatlin. The 6-foot-7, 300-pound standout from Jonesboro H.S. in Jonesboro, Arkansas spoke to Peegs.com about the offer he picked up from IU last week.
Gatlin said the Hoosiers extended him an offer after offensive line coach Darren Hiller watched him practice with his team in spring ball.
“Coach Hiller came down here and watched practice, and afterwards he wanted me to call Coach (Tom) Allen, the head coach,” Gatlin said. “I called Coach Allen and he said they were offering me. He said that they like the physicality I play with and how I finish my blocks. He also said that I move and bend really well, especially for someone my size. He said that they think I would be a great fit for their offense.”
Gatlin said that he and Coach Hiller have developed a strong connection, and a big reason for that is the ties that the Indiana assistant has to the Jonesboro area.
“Over the last few weeks I have been able to develop a really good bond with him,” Gatlin said about Coach Hiller. “We talk quite a bit and I have gotten to know him well. We have a lot in common, and with him being in Jonesboro recently (as an assistant at Arkansas State) we have a special relationship.”
The three-star recruit was in Bloomington last month for an unofficial with the Hoosiers, and he came away impressed with what Indiana has to offer.
“What stood out the most on that trip was Coach Allen and Coach Hiller,” Gatlin said about his visit to IU. “They did a great job with the players and I love the way they coach. I was also impressed with the facilities and the people there. They have great people at Indiana and they were great to be around. Being in Bloomington really reminded me a lot of Jonesboro, and I hope to get back there soon.”
Gatlin has offers from Indiana, Arizona State, Iowa State, Mississippi State, Texas Tech, Virginia, Air Force, Arkansas State, Louisiana-Monroe, Louisiana Tech, Marshall, Memphis, SMU, Western Kentucky and Texas State. He said that his plan is to wait until after his senior season before picking a college.
“I’m just keeping my options open right now,” Gatlin said. “I want to build a relationship with as many schools as I can and go through the process before I make a decision. Right now I plan on waiting until after my senior season is over before I decide. I want to narrow my list down by the start of my season, and then I will take my official visits this fall before committing.”
The big O-lineman said the Hoosiers are definitely one of the schools that he sees himself making an official visit to this fall.
“They have a great chance to be one of my top five schools,” Gatlin said about IU. “I really like everything about Indiana.”